YOUR HELP IS VITAL TO THE SUCCESS OF MY RESEARCH. IF YOU FIND ANY SHED PARAKEET FEATHERS OR HAVE ANY FROM YOUR PET PARAKEET PLEASE SEND THEM TO ME.
To enable me to unravel the genes of these colorful free-living parakeets, I need to collect feathers of ringneck parakeets from around the country (such as feathers shed from ringneck parakeets that visit your garden or park, or from locally-known parakeet roost sites). I can then use laboratory techniques that we have developed here at DICE to extract the DNA from each feather. By analyzing the DNA of individual parakeets from across their UK distribution, I hope to reconstruct the genetic origin of these birds and to identify patterns in the genetic diversity within the population, whilst creating an up-to-date picture of where these birds can be found around the UK.
Here’s where you can help! If you come across any parakeet feathers in your garden, or whilst out on a walk, please collect them and post them (flat, and dry in an envelope) to me at the address below, including with them details of where you found them, and/or your postcode (so that I can have a record of the approximate origin from which they were collected). If you find feathers from more than one location, it would be ideal if you could place them in separate ziplock bags or envelopes (I would be glad to send you Ziploc bags, if required). If you would like include your contact details too, I will then be able to keep you updated with regards to my research as part of my parakeet contact network. Please contact me if you have any queries or would like me to provide you with a SAE for you to send your feathers.
Durrell Institute of Conservation and Ecology
School of Anthropology and Conservation
University of Kent